You want to become a first-time owner-operator. You want to be the boss. Good for you. In fact, small businesses account for 99.7% of all business in the United States. There are steps you can take to create your own business by becoming a semi-truck owner-operator. Follow these steps and you’ll learn the freedom and responsibility of being your own boss.
- Have experience as a truck driver. Working for a trucking company can benefit you because you’ll have learned the ins and outs of the trucking industry.
- Obtain USDOT and MC numbers. You’ll need a registered USDOT (United States Department of Transportation) number as an MC (Motor Carrier) number — giving you the legal authority to operate a semi-truck.
- Obtain truck insurance. You’ll need insurance because it’s the law and because it’s intended to mitigate your risks and liability in the event of an accident or other unforeseen events.
- Which type of trucking authority? Carrier trucking authority is categorized into common or contract. A common carrier is available to be hired by a broker or a shipper. A contract carrier is contracted to haul loads for a specific company. Contract carriers cannot do work for the general public.
- Lease or buy a truck? Familiarize yourself with your assets because a used semi-truck can cost anywhere from $60,000 to $100,000 or more. If you are considering leasing a truck, then you can look into a lease-to-own truck purchasing option. If you choose semi truck financing for owner-operators, you can save on your largest start-up cost: your truck.
- Find your freight. Truckloads on the Google Play Store or other web applications or mobile (iOS and Android) devices is free and it has over 3 million monthly loads to search through. You’ll also have access to unlimited premium loads and the ability to view a broker’s credit score, time to pay, and you’ll be able to contact them right from the app.
- Semi truck financing for owner-operators. Getting commercial or heavy-duty truck loans are different than a typical automobile loan. Your local bank may not offer them. Even banks that advertise their services to small businesses typically do not finance trucking companies. There are options, however.
Becoming a semi truck owner-operator can take time. Think of it as an adventure and an investment. Becoming your own proprietor, your own boss, requires upfront payments for your operating costs, including payment of taxes, fees, and possible repairs or upgrades. Again, you’ll want to find out if you’ll need semi truck financing for owner-operators or first time owner-operator financing. However, do not let the work on the front end discourage you! Once you’re an owner-operator you’ll have untapped earning potential that you’ll have missed out on otherwise.
First, research your options. Look into semi truck financing companies. See which ones tackle semi truck financing for owner-operators. Do your homework, look into semi-truck owner-operator financing or small business loans for truckers, make a game plan, and then get started on your career journey to become an independent semi truck owner-operator!